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I Am Legend

4.06 of 5 stars 4.06  ·  rating details  ·  42,142 ratings  ·  2,618 reviews
Robert Neville is the last living man on Earth... but he is not alone. Every other man, woman and child on the planet has become a vampire, and they are hungry for Neville's blood. By day he is the hunter, stalking the undead through the ruins of civilization. By night, he barricades himself in his home and prays for the dawn.

How long can one man survive like this?
Hardcover, 160 pages
Published September 1st 2011 by Gollancz (first published 1954)
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Rajesh Purushothaman yes... very much!

Community Reviews

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"I am legend". These words make me shudder. But if you have only seen that Will Smith movie that went 180 degrees on the book's message, the soul-crushing impact of these words will be lost on you.
That makes me sad...

To quote Stephen King, "I think the author who influenced me the most as a writer was Richard Matheson."
This was enough of a recommendation for me to go and dig up this book. And it's great.
(view spoiler)
Kat Stark

Buddyread with the Drunken Dragon: Rabin (Click to read his review)--seriously.

I can’t compete with my buddy Jeff’s review for this one (if you haven’t seen it, you should really check it out), so I’ll just answer one question for you...

What do you do when you’re the last human being on earth?

What Robert Neville does:

-brush his teeth

-listen to boring classical music

because Rock and Roll had not been invented yet.

-make a list of things to do

-daydreams about sexing up women

-cries about the loss o

I was going to rate the book a lukewarm 3 stars, but then I looked once more at the date of publication (1954) and reconsidered. A bit of historical perspective, of literary context elevates this novel to the well deserved 'genre classic' status. At the time Matheson published his science-fiction take on the gothic vampire myth, the market was a lot different from today's oversaturated landscape that has largely trivialized the subject and gave it a curious teenage romance slant. Even bringing i
I just re-read this after watching some of the movies based on it. It's truly a chilling book. It's an apocalyptic novel. The vampire plague has destroyed our society. Much of the book focuses on our hero's loneliness. When he finds an uninfected dog, his attempts to befriend it are almost pathetic & truly heart-wrenching. It's well worth reading.

There are 3 movies that I know of that are based on this book.

The Last Man On Earth starring Vincent Price in the mid 60's. This follows the book
Morgue Anne
May 24, 2012 Morgue Anne rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Scifi and Horror Fans
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.

I Am Legend by Richard Matheson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Blurb: Robert Neville is the last man left alive on Earth...but he is not alone. Every other man, woman and child on the planet has become a vampire. Neville spends his days scavenging for food and supplies, and hunting down the undead in their lairs in the ruins of civilisation. At night, he becomes the hunted and barricades himself in his home, waiting and praying for the dawn.

I Am Legend was one of the first, and certainly the most bril
Kat  Hooper
ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.

I don’t like vampire novels much, so I wasn’t planning to read Richard Matheson’s classic vampire story I am Legend which was published in 1954, is also known by the title The Omega Man, and is, of course, the basis for the movie I am Legend.

But then I recently read and was enthralled by two other books by Matheson: The Incredible Shrinking Man and Steel and Other Stories. I realized that The Incredible Shrinking Man wasn’t really so much about a man who w
Aug 17, 2013 Carol. rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of classic apocalypse
Recommended to Carol. by: SciFi and Fantasy Book Club monthly read

There are some excellent reviews out there. I know I was complaining about sqeeing and gifs recently, but I can't help but think a classic book like this could use a little modern reviewing.




I'm a little mixed in my reading reactions to a novella that feels more like a self-conscious allegorical tale than truly innovative storytelling. The short, choppy prose suited the narrator, but gave a more limited ambiance to the setting. Given the protagonist Neville's relatively easy ability in m
1. I'd like to take this opportunity to apologize for all of the Will Smith jokes. It's going to be difficult, but I will refrain from including him in this review.

2. Stuff I liked - Matheson does an amazing job in describing the situation Neville has deal with as the only person left in the world. The scariest parts for me where when Matheson deals with themes like isolation and loneliness. That stuff was much more terrifying than the vampires (more on them later). There were entire chapters of
Mike (the Paladin)
This is another one of those times when there are people who if they could would give this book far more than the allowed 5 while if I were rating it on "enjoyment alone" I'd be looking to give it negative stars. I realize this is one of the "classics" of science fiction (or science fantasy)and I don't care. I read it years ago and while I find the writing in places rates my recognition of it's quality...I don't care for the book.

Like some of Matheson's other works there are some questions that
Truly chilling!! Gave me nightmares and I love to read horror! I can't wait to read more of his works. SOON!!!

Perhaps Stephen King says it best: I think the author who influenced me the most as a writer was Richard Matheson. Books like I Am Legend were an inspiration to me.

When reading this book, keep in mind that it was written in 1954... well before the recent zombie and vampire craze...

It is set in a post-Apocalyptic 1976 -- where by a trick of fate Robert Neville is the only living human rem
I never would have expected the internal dialogue of the last man alive to be as captivating as this book was. Robert Neville is alone, the last uninfected human left as far as he knows, and every day is a struggle to keep it that way. His anger, depression, frustration and fear are thrown up against the desire to live almost every moment of every day and there are some when you're not sure which will win.

Some of the issues brought up are unique to the fact that Robert Neville is a man alone in
Reading a modern classic for the first time, one which has been adapted into a number of movies and to a certain extent has entered the culture, is a fine way to set oneself up for disappointment. How can it possibly match its reputation? How can it live up to the reader’s preconceptions? How can it meet expectations?

I’m pleased to say that Richard Matheson’s ‘I am Legend’ is a fantastic read which more than deserves its good name.

Despite the various adaptations making the monsters more zombie-l
Dirk Grobbelaar
A novel that has been both heavily criticized and revered, I Am Legend straddles an uneasy line between Horror and Science Fiction. However, there is no denying its influence, nor its simple charm. In comparison with some of the 'vampire' drivel being served up today, this little novel is indeed legend. It ranks with Salem's Lot as one of my favourite reads on the vampire mythos. I know that the science isn't sound, but Matheson has done a terrific job of introducing new ways to broach the subje ...more
Daniel Bastian
"There were no psychiatrists left to murmur of groundless neuroses and auditory hallucinations. The last man in the world was irretrievably stuck with his delusions."

That moment you realize how sharply the film deviates from the source material...

After a repeat viewing of Francis Lawrence's 2007 remake with Will Smith, I think I can understand why. Richard Matheson's sci-fi-horror elixir probably wasn't a guaranteed sell for viewers drugged on action flicks and bowtie endings. Granted, there ha
Four fifths of the way through and the only thing on my mind was how incredibly boring and one-dimensional Robert Neville is. You would think that someone forced into solitude and surrounded by death and insanity would have a wonderfully colourful and twisted mind - if you're going to have a book revolving around a single character, make him a really good one. So, it wasn't until he began chasing, abusing and kidnapping a woman in the name of science (everything in this book was tunnel-viewed 'i ...more
May 24, 2012 jzhunagev rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: classic horror olvers
Recommended to jzhunagev by: Stephen King
I am Legend by Richard Matheson (A Book Review)

After reading this masterpiece by Richard Matheson, I was overtaken by a great feeling of regret; regret that I had to wait for so long just to sink my (fanged) teeth into this magnificent post-apocalyptic vampire story; regret that I saw the recent movie adaptation of the same title first before reading it. But then again the movie is a good one, in itself.

If you haven’t heard of nor made aware of this book’s existence, then most likely you’ve see
Potajno sam se nadao nekom srecnijem kraju (srecnom happy endu :) )
My first Horror book, I Am Legend, and I didn't even find it scary!

 photo tumblr_m2sh3pLFty1qbg4doo2_500_zpssd0okoj1.gif

This book is more like an account of a person living alone, surrounded by vampires. I have read many other vampire books, and I never find that horrifying element in them. Putting this book under Horror Shelf is not appropriate, I think, as it is more like a work in psychology.

I read this book because I was looking for a Horror Book, my first Horror Book, and this book was listed under 'World's Scariest Books' list, so I picked
It's 1976, and the world's population has been wiped out by an unknown affliction. Robert Neville is the last man alive. Immune to the plague by some trick of fate, he is left alone in the world, with nothing but an unescapable will to continue living.

After dark, the dead population come to stand outside Neville's boarded up home, to taunt and torment him. He keeps them away with garlic, crosses and mirrors, lest they come after his blood. During the day he goes through houses staking the peopl
Quentin Wallace
A true horror classic. I don't think any of the movie adaptations have truly captured the essence of the book (but I have enjoyed them as well.)The book is a bit of a character study as well as a great horror novel. It's basically considered a vampire story, but as you can see form the various movies, it has been open to interpretation.

The lone human vs. hordes of monsters usually does make a good story, but it can also be cliche, especially with zombies getting so popular lately. When this book
I'm going to start by saying that I really enjoyed the most recent movie version of I Am Legend. I thought it was really well-done. I knew that it wasn't anything like the book, but it was a good movie as it was. It's one of those movies that I'm glad I saw without having the book in my head to contrast it to.

That said, I enjoyed the book immensely too. It is very different than the movie, and that's okay. They can be different and each can be judged on it's own merits. I was a bit surprised to
Odlična knjiga. 10 puta bolja od filma i sa krajem koji ima smisla i zbog čega je postao legenda :)

Knjiga se bavi idejom da je zemlju prekrila pošast vampirizma i prati Nevila u pokušaju da preživi i razume svoj novi svet. Bilo šta višpe reći će samo da kvari čitanje tako da ćutim.

Preporuka za čitanje i ako ste gledali film ne brinite knjiga je daleko bolja.
Wendy Darling
Terrific. Loved the first half of the book, a little less engaged by the second, overly "sciency" half, when story took a back seat to explanation.

The Blackstone Audiobooks version read by Robertson Dean is very engaging, by the way. I'm so horribly picky about narrators (It's not an exaggeration to say that I probably give up on roughly 90% of the audiobooks I try), but I loved this actor's voice and passionately measured reading style. And I am immensely fond of the rich, flavorful way that he
Igor Ljubuncic
Let's start with the 2007 film with Will Smith.

That was one pile of pseudo-religion mainstream diarrhea trash that does so much injustice to the book, you should ask to have your memory deleted if you've ever watched it.

Now the book.

Simple, proper horror. The author portrays the feeling of loneliness and despair in a very vivid, touching way. The way the protagonist responds to the dog, and then the sight of ... let's not spoil, are harrowing, brutal, elemental, heartbreaking, disturbing, beauti
This is definitely one of the Grand-daddies of the Post-Apocalyptic/Dystopian/Virus/Monsters-taking-over-the-world stories.

This book had to be a commentary on where Matheson thought we were headed as a society - not just a simple tale of vampires created by a virus.

It is amazing how much he fits in to a 160 page book. I am thinking that Matheson must have been a master of telling a lot of story in very few pages.

A very suspenseful and quick read. This would be a great choice for horror fans, po
My second foray into Matheson's long fiction and this one was epic. This is a perfect example why I love Matheson's short fiction so much, but in a longer form. A perfect balance of suspense, horror and psychological drama. I've seen two cinematic adaptations of the story, but this was nevertheless fresh and capable of surprising, since movies never really stick to the written pages with a great degree of accuracy. While Bram Stocker's Dracula will unarguably remain the vampire classic, this boo ...more
I'm between giving this 4 and 5 stars so truly, this is more of a 4.5 stars.

I am Legend is - I can't believe it! I can't remember even why I got it in the first place. I rarely browse the adult fantasy section any more, I usually whip past it I admit. If I do go there it is a planned purchase.

I bought it during pre-deadline depression at my final year of university. I was intrigued because it is a classic - written in the 1950's and I guess when I think of fantasy or sci-fi I think of witches,
Forget about sparkling vampires. This is one of the most heartbreaking and beautifully written stories that have ever been written. It is a post apocalyptic book about single man's struggle to stay alive in a world that has been run over by vampires. It is not a horror-story in the traditional sense, it is also not a vampire story in traditional sense. This is a story that explores one of the most tragic emotions any human can be asked to face: namely that of loneliness. Nothing that I write cou ...more
Carolyn (Book Chick City)
I have read this book a couple of times and I love it. I gave it 5 stars. I wanted to reread it again but thought this time I would try it in a different medium, so I am listening to the audiobook.

This is one of my all time favourite horror novels, and I still loved the story as much as I always have. I enjoyed the audiobook, but not as much as reading the book myself. The narrator was ok but he was very slow, and so for the first time ever I increased the speed to 1.25x. I’ve never done this be
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Born in Allendale, New Jersey to Norwegian immigrant parents, Matheson was raised in Brooklyn and graduated from Brooklyn Technical High School in 1943. He then entered the military and spent World War II as an infantry soldier. In 1949 he earned his bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and moved to California in 1951. He married in 1952 and has four children, three of w ...more
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“Full circle. A new terror born in death, a new superstition entering the unassailable fortress of forever. I am legend.” 168 likes
“In a world of monotonous horror
there could be no salvation in wild dreaming.”
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